THE University of Limerick has been ranked 11th in the world of its academic peers for its efforts towards campus sustainability and environmentally friendly management.
The green metric ranking of world universities for 2014 placed UL overall 11th in the world out of 360 participating universities from 62 countries and third out of 100 suburban universities worldwide.
The universities were ranked in respect of their ‘green’ approach to the six key areas of: setting and infrastructure (15%), energy and climate change (21%), waste management (18%), water usage (10%), transportation (18%), and education (18%). UL has improved on its 2013 position when it was placed 29th worldwide, as it has since minimised electricity, gas and water consumption on campus.
UL president, Professor Don Barry said their improved ranking is “well deserved, as we work tirelessly at UL to ensure our beautiful environment is preserved and enhanced every year”.
“We undoubtedly have one of the most beautiful university campuses in Europe and there is a strong ethos of responsibility for our environment here. The buildings and estates department, the UL environmental committee and the entire UL community have worked on continually improving environmental management at UL and on initiatives to implement projects around car-pooling, paper recycling, electronics recycling, energy management and smarter travel,” said President Barry.
Since rolling out a system to meter, record, monitor and target infrastructural improvements to UL’s 13km of water network, annual water consumption has reduced by 35% from its peak in 2007 – the equivalent to 36 Olympic sized swimming pools of water.
The roll-out of UL’s mobility management plan has resulted in reductions in both staff and students using their car to travel to UL and increases in the percentage of students and staff car sharing, cycling and walking to work. There have also been promotional activities such as the establishment of a community roof garden and orchard, and riverbank clean-ups.